Reclaiming Domains

Reclaiming Dakwanje

-Labels for the kitchen area, and clothing-

Klukshu Dialect

taught by Paddy Jim

families must retrieve their rightful position as the first teachers of our languages. They must talk our languages every day, everywhere, with everyone, anywhere


Why is using Dákwanjè in the home important?

The home is the main space for maintaining and reproducing Dákwanjè

  • It supports the transmission of Dákwanjè between parent and/or caregiver and child, otherwise known as intergenerational language transmission
  • It requires learning and using every day language for real-life situations
  • Children are more likely to be successful learning Dákwanjè in school if they have opportunities to use it in the home and community
  • Successful language-learning for children is supported by the involvement of parents and family members
  • It supports a strong First Nations identity for both children and adults
  • Language and culture are connected and research shows that families draw strength from their cultures
  • Regularly speaking Dákwanjè in your home will help making using Dákwanjè in other areas of your life normal
  • Bringing Dákwanjè into your home will help ensure that the next generation has access to the Dákwanjè language and culture – this will help break the cycle of trauma that has been caused by colonization and will allow for individual and community well-being

Reclaiming domains: Reclaiming domains is a tool for language revitalization which envisions the world as broken up into different places and activities. There are four classifications of language domains.

Reclaiming a location: home, work, car, fish camp

a relationship: mother, father, co-workers, spouse, children, grandchildren

a topic: greetings, weather, sports

an activity: dancing, singing, sewing, carving, cooking, bathing, swimming

As well there are over-arching domains that have sub-domains. For example, under the location domain, ‘home’ could be broken into smaller sub-domains. A sub-domain under the home could be the kitchen, and a sub-topic under the kitchen could be making toast. So reclaiming a ʼdomainʼ becomes a, multi-step process.

Learning a language in the home means inviting the mind of that language into one’s everyday life; it is a personal rather than academic undertaking ( Carson Viles)


Here is a document you can print out and put around your kitchen area:

reclaiming the kitchen


Making Toast

Dazhąw suknen tʼu si  – Here is the bread

Suknen tʼu si ka dímbat –  I am hungry for bread

Ayet suknen chʼü ayet taniʼa nanudhal ni  Put that bread in so it heats up

Ayet suknen tʼu si tthʼa ye ke uʼal ni- I am going to put the bread onto a dish

Dazhąw khē datthäw – Here is the butter

Ábread butter makäy kʼennje – I am going to spread butter on my bread

Dazhan suknen tʼu si ajunen däw – This bread is for my child

Making a cup of coffee

Dlųą ndäy – Coffee (mouse eye)

Jenachʼür chu – Coffee (black water)

Keshäw dlųą ndäy dímbat – I am thirsty for coffee

Dlųą ndäy ísi ni – I am making coffee

Lhanachʼe tsʼàl dlųą ndäy matʼanįtlʼet = You pour four spoons of coffee


Making Soup

Chu meye kenńtlʼet – You pour water in

Khe matʼanįtlʼet – You pour grease in

Tayke tsʼàl atʼanitlʼet – You pour three spoons

Maye inlhenithęt – You stir it

Ye ye nmbür chʼi ayet tadhal? – What you make that soup with?


Making Popcorn

Makanítà ayet popcorn dísel – Look at it, I am making popcorn

Ayet popcorn nchʼü chį etlʼ tikwansinawkʼw matʼanįtlʼeda – You put salt and pepper onto the popcorn that you are cooking

Ayet popcorn meyenílhį – I want that popcorn


Baking Salmon or any other food

Ayet sambäy aju nashanatan chʼe The salmon is not frozen anymore

Ayet sambäy tthʼa ye ke uʼal ni- I am going to put the salmon onto a dish

Ayet sambäy uchʼü chį etlʼ tikwansinawkʼw matʼanįtlʼeda – Iʼm putting salt and pepper onto the salmon

Stuk dekʼąʼ – I am turning the stove on

Ayet sambäy astuk tʼaadikal uchʼü däw – I am going to bake the salmon in the stove

Ayet sambäy astuk tʼikäy-chį shekʼa aju achʼü madäw kaathe íchʼe – I am still waiting for the salmon to bake in the stove


Frying Eggs or any other food

Ji ghär uchʼü ni I am going to fry eggs

Daandrü ji ghür yenilia? – How many eggs do you want?

Ji ghär lhachʼi meye kenugür ni – I am breaking one grouse egg

Ji ghär tthē – Grouse egg shell

Khe matʼanįtlʼet – You pour grease in

Ayet ye nnʼi níkä̀r kulį̀ kalha diʼā – What your cooking turn it over



*These labels are especially good for those with young children*

Nítsʼät thadìdá – Put your hat on         Ntsʼaat thaditʼa – Take your hat off

Níür tʼanína – Put your shirt on           Niür ye kaníʼná – Take your shirt off

Nímbät tʼadiji – Put your mitts on     Nimbaat ye kadínjì – Take off your mitts

Àyet níthü t’adich’uh – Put your pants on Nithü ye kanigè – Take your pants off

Nítlʼukwʼän tʼädichʼu – Put your socks on Nitlʼukʼwan ye kanigè – Take off your socks

Níkē ye käníchʼu – Put your shoes on Nikē ye kanngè – Take your shoes off



For more information on Reclaiming Domains please check out ʔəswəli, (Zalmai Zahir) You Tube video:

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